I’d like to share with you a personal story of mine, and it’s not to shine light on my amazingness as a human being or anything like that (and people think I have an ego, wow… – ed.), it’s just to show how something that has very little value or meaning to someone can mean the world to another.
A couple months back I found myself choppin’ it up with my mom about work. My mom is an overnight maintenance supervisor for a retail store. She along with her team are the people that make the store look presentable before the doors open to the public at 6 am. She mentions to me that many of her co-workers struggle to make ends meet and do not have the means to be able to splurge on themselves like other people have the opportunity to do so. Every time we talk about her work she never fails to mention her right hand man. This guys work his butt off and really make things easier for my mom and her team to complete their night shift. My mom is the brains of the operation but the right hand man (with the guidance and direction of my mom) is the ones that executes what needs to be done.
She also mentions to me that the guys is one of the most humble and caring people you will ever meet. I’ve met the guy before and I can confirm that he is definitely a good human being. That type of guy that shares anything he has with you even if it’s his last. But like many other people, he lives paycheck to paycheck and has a hard time spending his hard earned money on luxury items such as a pair of name brand basketball sneakers.
One of those nights the guy told my mom that he had just gotten a brand new pair of shoes from Walmart. The Belmart sneaker you see up top goes for a grand total of $10. He asked my mom “What do you think? Nice huh?”. My mom nodded and smiled at the guy. Since he goes through shoes really quick due to the type of work he does, these are the most convenient and economical shoes that make the most sense for him. What I failed to mention is that these are also the types of shoes that he wears to go out, the only difference is that those shoes are are much more cleaner and taken care of since he only uses them casually. This is what he can afford at the current moment. He may not like them, but they get the job done. Although there’s nothing wrong with buying this type of sneaker, the guy has always had a deep love for Nike and Air Jordans. Only problem is, he’s never had the luxury to get himself a pair that he can call his own.
When my mom told me this, it really made me think about two things. One, how blessed I am to have the life I live. I may not be where I want to be in life yet, but I have my health, family, roof under my head and enough money to buy any shoe I want when I want. That may not seem like a lot, but to many people having a fraction of what I have is all but a dream. The second thing I thought about, life is hard and many times it’s not fair for a lot of people. Sometimes some of the dopest and genuine people get dealt a bad deck of cards and they find themselves fighting every single day of their life just to stay afloat. That’s when it hit me, if I have the opportunity to make someones day by doing or giving something to them that they will truly cherish, why not do it?
That’s when my pair of Air Jordan 3 Fusion came in to play. I remember buying these back in 2008 when they barely came out. I actually spent $150 on them and I used to think they were some of the dopest sneakers ever created. I mean a Jordan 3 combined with the legendary Air Force 1, it truly was the best of both worlds. Right? I remember taking very good care of them, that 7 years later the only thing wrong with them would be the creasing on the toe box. Like many of my shoes though, I no longer had any use for them and it was time to let them go. I was planning to post them online and sell them for around $15, but then I thought of someone that was going to appreciate these a lot more if I were to gift it to him. Quickly I asked my mom to ask the guy what size shoe he wears. He ends up wearing .5 a size smaller than what I wear, I guess he’ll have to double sock it. I asked my mom if she could do me a favor by taking the shoes to work to give to the guy, and she did. My mom told me that the moment the guy saw the pair of shoes were Jordan/Nike brand, he went berzerk with excitement! He anxiously asked my mom “How much?”, and when my mom let him know it was a gift from her son (me), he could not believe it. He was so grateful that he had no idea what to say to my mom. Even though to many people those Fusion 3s would be considered trash or beaters, to this guy it was his first pair of Jordans that he will cherish forever. Even if I told you, you would not believe the amount of thank you messages my mom relayed on behalf of that guy, letting me know how thankful he was for the pair of shoes I gave him. I was so content to see that he will put those shoes to good use.
Those shoes meant nothing to me, but to that guy they were the best sneakers he had owned in a very long long time. Just goes to show, one man’s “trash” can really be another man’s treasure. I’m just glad I was able to make someones day by simply giving them a pair of Fusions I no longer had use for.